The inscribed terracotta aphrodite from mount carmel revisited in context

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This study proposes that the terracotta figurine of Aphrodite from el-Wad Cave (Mecarat ha-Nahal) on Mount Carmel is an eastern import from Asia Minor, possibly Myrina (Aeolis), depicting an Aphrodite Anadyomene of late Hellenistic or Roman date from the first century BCE-first century CE. This conclusion is supported by a petrographical examination of its clay, a close examination of the figurine's clay fabric and manufacturing technique and careful reconstruction of its original appearance. Set within an increasingly large corpus of published terracotta figurines found in Israel and elsewhere, the study clarifies the figure's style, date and iconographic type, offers a new understanding of its inscription and suggests that it may have entered the Land of Israel through the port of Dor or, more probably, Caesarea, later to be deposited in the cave as a cultic votive.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)76-109
Number of pages34
JournalIsrael Exploration Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Archaeology
  • History
  • Archaeology


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